Monthly Archives: November 2016

Space by conquering clutter

The most serene bedrooms share several things in common: a soft color scheme, a pampering, luxurious bed, soft but adequate lighting, and growing greenery, to name a few. But one thing you’ll never find in a tranquil, calming bedroom is clutter. Disorganization is the enemy of relaxation; it’s hard to drift off into quality sleep when reminders of all the things you haven’t gotten to yet are surrounding you.

Your bedroom is the last thing you see before falling asleep at night, and the first thing to greet your eyes in the morning, so shouldn’t that space be as appealing and welcoming as possible? If your bedroom needs a little bit of help in the organization department, the following nine tips will help you whip things into shape.

Make Your Bed

It costs you nothing, takes only a minute or so in the morning, and is the most powerful tool in your organization toolbox when it comes to making your bedroom look better. When the bed is rumpled and unmade, even an otherwise gorgeous room looks messy. And conversely, when the bed is neatly made, your bedroom looks better, even if other areas of the room could use a little decluttering. So take those extra seconds each morning to straighten your pillows, pull up the sheets, and smooth out your comforter or duvet. Voila, your bedroom just became more organized.

Time for the Purge

You knew it had to be said; before you can get organized, you need to get rid of all those things that aren’t needed, aren’t loved, or aren’t usable. So gather up the clothes and shoes that don’t fit or flatter, the books you’ve already read, the collectibles that you don’t really treasure, the treadmill or exercise ball you swore you’d use every morning but now serves mostly to hold clothes that either belong in the dresser or in the laundry hamper.

 Let the Goodwill benefit from your castoffs, because it’s to your benefit as well. Once you get rid of the things you really don’t need, it’s far easier to organize what’s left.

Take Advantage of the Space Under Your Bed

You’ve got several square feet of real estate underneath your bed – why waste it? That space is a prime storage area for shoes, seasonal clothing and sporting equipment, extra linens and other bulky items. Make it easy with under-bed storage boxes, preferably clear so you can see what’s inside without having to open the box, and with handles for easy access. If necessary, elevate your bed a few inches with bed risers. Now you have more clearance for storage.


Conquer the Closet

Make your mornings easier by sorting out your closet. First, get rid of anything that doesn’t belong in the bedroom, along with clothes and shoes you no longer wear. Then invest in a few closet organizers – a shoe rack is a must. Hanging organizers and shelf racks are also useful for sorting accessories, sweaters, and purses.

Arrange your clothing by type or season – whichever best suits your needs.

Bedside Storage

While a nightstand that is basically a small table can certainly add a touch of beauty to a bedroom, it’s a waste as far as organization and storage go. Save the table-style nightstands for the guest room, and choose a model with drawers for your own bedroom. Now you have a spot to stash all the sundries that tend to clutter up the bedside area: Kleenex, lip balms, books, pen and paper, hand cream and the like.


Give Jewelry a Home

A traditional jewelry box makes it easy to sort and store your bling, but it’s not the only option. If you have a large collection of jewelry, show it off on a small, framed piece of pegboard hung on the wall. Store rings and earrings in mismatched china cups, or on a pretty tray atop the dresser.


Don’t Forget the Doors

Install hooks on the backs of your bedroom and closet doors, and use them to hang your bathrobe, jacket, purse, scarves, hats, and belts.


Add a Trunk

If you have enough room, a trunk or storage bench at the foot of the bed is a great spot to stash extra linens or out-of-season clothing. Plus, it provides a convenient spot to sit and pull on your shoes in the morning. But be careful; don’t let the top of the trunk become another magnet for clutter.


Style Your Dresser Top

Dresser tops have a way of becoming clutter catchalls. Nip the problem in the bud by placing a few baskets or decorative boxes on your dresser to corral small items. Watch for the tendency to dump folded laundry atop your dresser; it only takes a few minutes to put clean clothing away, so make it a habit.

Best Bedroom Flooring Options

Bedroom flooring is a particularly intimate surface. It is the first thing your feet will step down on in the morning, and the last thing they will lift off of before climbing into bed each night. That means that the tactile and aesthetic effect that the floor will have on the space can also extend to the subconscious psyche of the person inhabiting it, making this a particularly important design decision.

Finding the best bedroom flooring material requires you to evaluate your options based on a number of different criteria. Some of these may be obvious, such as the feel of the floor, or how it looks. There may also be environmental concerns that you will want to explore, as well as issues of maintenance, and life cycle. The importance of these elements is based on the person who will actually be living there.


Bedrooms With Carpeting

Carpet is probably the most popular bedroom floor surface covering in industrialized nations where it is readily available. This is due chiefly to the fact that it is very soft and warm on a person’s feet. That tactile comfort helps to create a sense of lush luxury in the room, while also protecting you from cold toes on chilly winter mornings.

Another benefit of carpet in the bedroom is that it can provide a certain amount of insulation for the space. This can help to isolate the room from outside noises, making it easier to sleep at night.

At the same time, carpeting will also insulate the bedroom against the loss of heat, ensuring that the space will remain toasty warm.

Price is another factor that makes carpeting in the bedroom so popular. In recent decades the manufacturing process has gotten so efficient that the cost for low-end materials is $2 – $3 per square foot.

However, the price for higher end specialty materials will be higher. You also have to consider that carpeting has a shorter lifespan than alternatives such as hardwood, so will need to be replaced regularly.

Drawbacks: The major drawback to bedroom carpet is the fact that it is very difficult to keep it clean. Liquid stains can seep deep into the padding and remain permanently. At the same time, carpet tends to attract both dust, and small microbial organisms, which can contribute negatively to the air quality of the space.



Bedrooms With Hardwood Floors

Next to carpet, hardwood flooring is the second most popular choice for a bedroom. While it’s not as soft as its padded counterpart, hardwood planks do have some yield, and are both softer, and warmer underfoot than most tile and stone alternatives. This can be combined with throw rugs and area rugs to both gentle, and customize the look of the surface.

The thing that hardwood can really lend to a bedroom is the inherent natural beauty that can be found in each, individual piece.

While the look will vary to some extent based on species, grade, cut, and stain, the material itself always maintains a feel of primal, basic beauty, which is inherent to the biological truths within each of us.

Drawbacks: There are several drawbacks to hardwood in bedrooms. First, it can be very noisy. Most hardwood floors have little or no insulation, which means that those dwelling below may be able to clearly hear every footstep you take. It also provides little in the way of heat insulation.

What You Need to Know About Natural Home Decorating

Step away from the warm side of the spectrum – red, orange and yellow – and pass by the cooler hues of green, blue and purple, and you enter the decorating world of the neutrals. Embracing all the shades of brown, gray, black and white, neutrals are both loved for their safety, versatility, ability to play well with others, and soothing vibes, and yet reviled for that same tendency to be “too safe,” “unexciting” or “drab.” In reality, however, neutrals can be every bit as beautiful, dramatic, elegant, and yes, even high contrast, if done correctly.


So just because you are stuck with apartment-rental-beige, or housing tract Swiss coffee, or simply prefer a palette that speaks in a whisper instead of a scream, there’s no reason to settle for boring. For proof, check out the gorgeous bedrooms featured here. All are predominantly decorated in neutrals, but not a one is boring, overly safe or without style. These are neutrals done right.

Think the only way to create a dramatic, high-contrast bedroom is to decorate with bright colors or moody blues, reds or greens? Well, think again, because if you choose them well, neutrals can be every bit as dramatic and eye-catching as the purer colors of the spectrum. Picture charcoal gray or chocolate brown (as in the room featured here) highlighted with gauzy accents of creamy white. Dreamy, dramatic and romantic, yet not a bright or primary color in sight. When you decorate with dark walls, like the room here, adding plenty of soft fabric accents keeps the look cozy and romantic, rather than spooky or cave-like. Beautiful.

The minimalist decorating style is free from clutter and unnecessary furnishings, with a clean and serene vibe that makes it perfectly suited to the bedroom. While often associated with a stark, cool palette of black, gray, and white, a palette of earth-tone neutrals also works very well with this tranquil decorating style, adding some warm welcome. Note that minimalist does not mean without personality, style or any adornment. The best minimalist rooms have interesting touches in the lighting, well-chosen artwork, and furnishings that keep the look friendly, not sterile.